Monday, 9 March 2009
Some packaging is inevitable. By now everyone in the Western world has any number of eco-friendly bags that are supposed to discourage us from getting disposable bags every time we shop, but sometimes a disposable bag can’t be helped. Once a disposable bag has come into my possession I feel obligated not just to recycle it at the end of its life, but also to upcycle it during the course of its stay in my home. For example, we don’t have a kitchen rubbish bin or recycling bin. Instead our rubbish goes into a plastic bag that has somehow made it in to our possession, and recycling goes into a paper shopping bag that can either itself go into the communal recycling skip or be reused again and again.
Recently I became a bit depressed when I visited a supermarket and came across individually wrapped prunes. Each little prune had made it all the way from California in its own plastic clothing together with all its friends in a hard plastic house, and for me this is the saddest thing in the world. Here’s a picture I found on Flickr of many happy dried fruits in Jemaa El Fna in Marrakech, just like the ones I saw when I was there last month. I can tell they are really delighted with themselves because they have a very teeny tiny carbon footprint, unlike their American cousins.